Sunday, June 09, 2013

The Reliance Digital Experience on 9th June 2013

Visiting Tech Retail stores is my passion . Over the years , I have been to many parts of world and visited stores of all sorts , However visiting the IT malls and superstores selling tech goods have been of special interest to me. I can spend hours browsing through the aisles , looking for “that” exclusive deal and checking out the new cool stuff.
So when Indiblogger announced “ the Reliance Digital Experience” contest , I was very comfortable to explore my favorite past time activity but with a very definite objective – Review the Reliance Experience - Happiness in Store

The day started with Heavy Rains and I was not sure if I could make the store visit today but a small break between showers was good enough for me to make dash to Reliance Digital store at Times Square , Andheri Kurla Road.

The store is not new me as I have already purchased my phone and washing machine from the same store a month back , however observing the store with a different lens was very interesting.

Reliance Digital

Let me talk about what I like about Reliance Digital store first –

The store was brightly lit and well organized, in fact I was wondering if this was the brightest IT mall in the world. The aisles were well displayed and well lit up with very clear signage about the product offers. The range of products was decent and also showcasing a few house brands. Over all the product showcase and availability is decent at Reliance Digital and that has promoted me to buy the Washing machine and Phone from the chain.
The store Manager, Ms. Gupta was very warm in welcoming to the store. She politely refused when I asked permission to take photographs to be included in the blog stating the reasons of pricing and competitive information may get revealed. My suggestion of censoring photos if needed was also refused. It was strange as a marketing campaign , you want your stores to be reviewed but without any pictures which give a positive experience to the reader.

Anyway , I was browsing through the aisles and the first pit stop was at All in Ones and Notebook section . No PC expert was in site and I have to ask a few times to get a PC person to answer my queries. There were many PC / Note book models but it was left to the buyer to make a choice of the relevant model and no assistance was offered. When I asked about any student offer for notebooks , I was given a blank stare. When I asked about Intel’s latest PC campaign where Reliance Digital is mentioned as a store partner , I was told the store has no details , Over all The PC section gets 3/10.

The phone section was well manned and the girl was able to show me around different models and also offered free advice on what product I should buy. No upsell for phone accessories or insurance. Lots of phones on display and across all popular brands. Overall the phone section was buzzing with activity and gets 6/10.

I asked a casual question if the Sony blu ray player can play my US blu ray disks and I got a 200% assurance that any blu ray disk will work on the India region blu ray player. Only after asking another senior sales person , the region locking truth came out and I have to leave the aisle without buying the blu ray player. The AV section is good with mid-range products stocked. Very few options for ipod docks or mid range AV systems.
The TV section was playing a move clip and not showing any HD quality sample which all TV companies share . It is not possible to understand the resolution and color experience if you don’t get to see a HD clip.

I asked if the store has any expensive floor standing speakers , the response was LG and Sony. When I asked about the special home theatre showcase area in the store and speakers displayed there , I was very reluctantly shown the goods there. I asked to show me a trial of Home theater with  Jamo speakers. The sales guy disappeared for 10 minutes and finally was spotted talking to another customer who was in store to buy a 20K TV. Interesting fact was that the same customer was being serviced by 2 more sales persons and here I was a “rich “ customer wanting to splurge my money.

The wait resulted in a USB stick with mp3 content which I refused as I wanted to see a Blu ray or a good audio CD. Another 4 minutes later , A Shrek Blu Ray CD emerged but this time no remotes available for the Sony AMP. Finally , I told the sales person that I will come back again to see the working home theatre experience. Frankly speaking this was the worst demo of any high end product at any Indian store I have visited. Over all the AV section gets 4/10

The consumer durable section is well stocked and sales persons were keen to add accessories and additional warranty and also managed to offer me an additional discount after consulting the store manager.

The payment section was efficient with iphone POS, additional counters will be useful for payments.

I think Reliance Digital has all the ingredients to make a good IT retail experience but they need to work on training their staff properly and ensuring that the customer gets a good experience.

Last but not least , I don’t like stores frisking their customers at the entry with a metal detector, something which I never seen at Croma , E-zone or even at Big Bazzar…

So , Reliance digital team , need some tweaks on your store experience strategy to get customers spend big money with you. Offers work but the Experience is what customer will share with 5 more new customers.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Magnificent Melbourne - The wait continues

 "Melbourne " the word brings a collage of experiences to me. I heard the beautiful word when I was 10 years old and India was battling out at MCG. since then I have been treasuring  the beautiful charm called Melburne in my " Must visit " cities.

The majestic city of Melbourne places itself at the cultural peak of Modern Australia. undoubtedly the cultural capital of Australia , Melbourne brings together a great mix of experiences to an avid traveller and a connoisseur of arts , culture , sports and fabulous food. This makes Melbourne a "Must Visit" destination for me.

I wanted to look at Melbourne through various eyeglasses , the first one from the Arts perspective. it will be Absolutely wonderful to visit the city and find the great architecture fusion of different styles in one place. A wonderful exihibition of Neo gothic , Colonial Georgian , Renaissance revival and Spanish mission styles dote the landscape of this great city. The city presents a great walking experience as you soak in the changes in the urban landscape over the period of 3 centuries. It will be a great start to understand the city and its history.

I am told when you visit Melbourne ,you should  time your visit with one of the great festivals  . You can count a number of festivals which make this city the cultural hub of Australia. Whenever you visit this city ,you are sure to be swept away clean in one of these festivals. To name a few - Melbourne International Film Festival , Melbourne writers festival , Melbourne Arts festival and many more The apt title of festival city brings together cultural experience of a wide range of ethnic communities that have settled in Melbourne .

I would love to be spoilt with choices on what I need to see,view ,breathe and experience at these great rituals of modern age. I think one should not wait for the best calendar of events , with so much to absorb , I am sure the call will be - "It's your time to visit Melbourne NOW".

The second view of Melbourne will come from its beatutiful landscape and outdoor experience . The great site of the Tweleve Apostles and  David Attenborough's narration has made this a must do event in my Melbourne plan. visiting the Penguin parade at Phillip Island will be a great experience too. It will be great fun to explore various beaches south of city to experience Aussie outdoors and surf.

I can't visualise Melbourne without talking about its Sporting traditions. How can I miss my first introduction to "Melbourne " through MCG ? The boxing day ritual of Test Match cricket and a glorious site of MCG full to its capacity cheering the start of the test match is an experience worth dying for and I wanted to cherish it in My Melbourne sojourn. I will be flooded with memories of the great sporting duels which took place here and it will be a truly memorable experience for the cricket lover like me.

while in love with MCG , I can't forget Australian open Tennis and Melbourne F1 which brings together another cocktail of sports to Melbourne and makes it even more tempting.

The last view of Melbourne I need to enjoy is all about its cuisine and warmth of people . Of it's many laurels , Melbourne also is lauded as the most liveable city and most edible city in the world. The city is  a gourmet dream and brings together experience from many cultures , Italian,Middle Eastern ,Vietnamese . I will spoilt for choice in trying the amazing varieties these bistros, cafes and restaurants offer. The exposure of Masterchef Australia has brought me closer to Aussie food and the famous chefs of Melbourne. I will look towards dining at Vue de Monde and No.35 enjoying fabulous creations of the top hated chefs of Melbourne.

Each city has its odd side and Melbourne runs great in this aspect as well.  I will look towards experiencing " Ned Kelly" experience restaurant .

Surely Melbourne will be riot of experiences which will make you overwhelmed . I wish I have a great vocabulary to pen every new experience in this great city and find enough adjectives to share them with my readers.

More on Melbourne can be checked at

still more ,wait till I visit and come back with my impressions . Till then cheers.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Saturday, May 12, 2012